An Interview with Millie Bloom

From what age did you start playing football? 

I started playing football when I was 4 years old when I joined my local club Chesham United mini-league after just moving to Amersham.

Who encouraged you? 

Right from the start it was my Dad and then lots of people since.

What is it about football that you love? 

I love the competitive element and being part of a team in a competitive and social way. Mostly, I just love the game itself!

What is your proudest achievement so far in the sport?

One of my proudest achievements to date would be being signed for Arsenal’s U16 RTC this season (although it pains me as a Spurs fan to wear their kit). Another would be being called up for the England U15 National Talent Camp last February even though it was called off due to the storms we had then. Additionally, I was very proud when my school football team made it to the semi-final of the National Cup in our first year competing and I ended up being top goal scorer in the competition.

Have you ever felt intimidated about being one of only two girls on the Chesham team?

Yes, as I sometimes feel if I were to ever make a mistake or slip up, some people might put it down to me being a girl. Because of this, it’s almost as if I have to play twice as well as anyone just to be seen as a regular player and not be judged because of my gender. But this just makes me more determined to prove people wrong.

Why do think there aren’t that many girls playing football?

I think it’s gone up a lot more recently, but due to the stereotypes it’s still a male dominant game. I think this is because it has more publicity, and it is normalized more at a younger age for men to play football rather than women.

What ambitions do you have for football? Do you want to make a career out of it?

It is my absolute dream to become a professional footballer and it has been ever since I started playing.

Who is your football idol (male and female) – and why?

Gareth Bale as I’ve always supported Tottenham and he was always my favourite player growing up, and still is. The first Tottenham game I ever went to was against Coventry in the FA Cup where we won 3-0 and Bale scored one.

My dad and I also went on a trip to Madrid one weekend to watch him play and he scored two that day in a 3-0 win against Leganes. It was a dream come true when he re-signed for us this season.

My favourite women’s player is either Lucy Bronze, because of how much she’s achieved including FIFA’s best women’s player of 2020, or Megan Rapinoe for what she has done internationally for women’s football.

What would you say to any girls wanting to play football but are reluctant to, because of the gender imbalance?

It can be difficult to start as you will get comments about your gender, but at the end of the day you have to think that if you enjoy playing, it has nothing to do with them and doesn’t affect them in any way, so their opinion doesn’t matter. It’s not up to them how you spend your life, so you have to try to ignore what they have to say. If everyone thought like that and was reluctant because people would comment on it, then there will never be a change.

Check out Millie’s Keepy Uppy Challenge Video!

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